Vol 55, No 3 (2017)
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Published online: 2017-08-03

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Morphological alterations in the jejunal mucosa of aged rats and the possible protective role of green tea

Zeinab A. Hassan, Agata Zauszkiewicz-Pawlak1, Shaimaa A. Abdelrahman, Sami Algaidi, Maha Desouky, Sally M. Shalaby
Pubmed: 28813122
Folia Histochem Cytobiol 2017;55(3):124-139.


Introduction. Gastrointestinal disorders become more prevalent with ageing. This study is aimed to describe morphological changes that occur in the jejunal mucosa of male albino rats as a result of ageing and the protec­tive effect of green tea (GT) extract.

Material and methods. The experiment was performed on sixty rats: thirty young-adult (6-month old, body mass 200–220 g) and thirty old (24-month-old, body mass 220–260 g) animals. Each group was further divided into two subgroups (n = 15 each): control rats and GT-treated rats that received 1.5 mL (300 mg/kg/day) of GT extract for 14 weeks by oral gavage. Sections of the jejunum were stained with hematoxylin and eosin, periodic acid Schiff, toluidine blue and Mallory trichrome methods. The presence of proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA)- and CD68-positive cells was evaluated by immunohistochemical staining. Ultrathin sections were prepared and examined by a transmission electron microscope (TEM).

Results. Jejunal sections of the old control rats showed distortion of submucosa and attenuated muscularis externa with decreased height of intestinal villi. The villi also showed partial loss of acidophilic brush border with wide spaces between enterocytes. Swollen, short, blunt or broad villi with abundant mononuclear cell infiltration of lamina propria and congested blood vessels were evident both by light and electron microscopy. The number of PCNA- and CD68-positive cells in jejunal mucosa of old rats was higher than in young rats. The activity of glutathione peroxidase (GPX) and total antioxidant capacity (TAC) in the mucosa of old control rats were lower, whereas malondialdehyde (MDA) levels were higher in the jejunal homogenates of old rats as compared to young control rats. Administration of GT extract protected the jejunal mucosa from age-related changes by restoring its histological structure. The treatment of old rats with GT extract significantly decreased MDA levels in the jejunum and increased TAC and GPX activity.

Conclusions. The age-related changes of the morphology of rat jejunum could be ameliorated by prolonged supplementation of the green tea extract.

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